If you’re already a Canadian permanent resident, you may consider applying for Canadian citizenship. You don’t need to be a citizen to live in Canada. You can enjoy more benefits than a permanent resident, like voting and running for office. When applying for Canadian citizenship, you’ll need to prepare some things before jumping into the process.
Applying for Canadian Citizenship
The steps involved in obtaining Canadian citizenship vary depending on your circumstances. There are a few general principles to keep in mind. You must show that you are familiar with Canada’s history, government structure, geography, and culture. You’ll also need to know how the government works at the federal and provincial levels. You need to get your application package from Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). You’ll use this package to complete all the forms necessary to apply for Canadian citizenship. Be sure to read all sections of the application package before starting, as there are specific requirements you need to meet.
Get Your Documents Ready
If you’re planning to become a Canadian citizen, now’s the time to start getting your documents ready. Prepare all the necessary documents for the application and keep them safely stored.
Some of the documents you’ll need are:
⦁ Proof of residency and identity
⦁ Proof of previous nationality (if from another country)
⦁ Proof of language proficiency
⦁ Evidence that you meet residency requirements.
⦁ Information about where you live, your family and marital status, employment history, and any criminal convictions
Learn About the Process
If you have decided to apply for Canadian citizenship, you need to know how it works. The process is not too complex but can be tedious and time-consuming. You need to get an idea about the process before starting.
There are two ways to apply for Canadian citizenship. You can apply through Citizenship and Immigration Canada, or an authorized representative or consultant like CCIRC. You can learn more about these options and how each one works by visiting their website or calling them directly for inquiries about your application process, fees, and other details surrounding how it’s done.
If you’re already a permanent resident of Canada, you can apply for citizenship after three years. If you were born abroad to Canadian parents, you could apply after two years. The processing times can vary depending on where you live. Some applicants may experience delays in their applications due to errors made while filling and submitting required documents.
Know About the Eligibility Requirements
Find out if you qualify. There are specific requirements in place that all applicants must meet. The application process can vary on a case-by-case basis, but first, you must:
⦁ Apply as an individual
⦁ Be at least 18 years old unless your parents are citizens and they are sponsoring you
⦁ Have lived in Canada as a permanent resident for at least three years (1,095 days) out of the last five years
⦁ Filed your taxes
⦁ Showcase your adequate knowledge of English or French through a test
⦁ Know about Canada and the rights and responsibilities of its citizens
⦁ Have an understanding of basic Canadian culture.
⦁ Have proof of your identity
⦁ Be free from any criminal convictions
⦁ Not be under removal orders from Canada
The Application Process
The application process is relatively easy, especially if you’re already a permanent resident of Canada and have met all of the requirements so far. You’ll need to complete an application form and send it to Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
You can apply online through the IRCC website or by paper through Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC). If you choose to file online, please ensure that you have your proof of status as a permanent resident when filling out your application. You’ll also need to provide biometrics and pay any necessary fees before submitting your application.
Every adult who applies for citizenship will also have to take the test. The forms are available on the IRCC website; you can download them there or request them by mail. The fees are $630 for adults and $100 for children under 18 and stateless persons.
Journey to Canadian Citizenship At a Glance
⦁ Ensure you’re eligible
⦁ Determine how long you’ve been in Canada
⦁ Gather the requisite documents
⦁ Complete the application form
⦁ Pay the necessary fees
⦁ Submit your application
⦁ Prepare for the test, then go to the interview and pass it
How Long Does it Take to Become a Canadian Citizen?
If the application process goes smoothly, it can take about six months to become a Canadian citizen. Once approved, you will be sworn in as a Canadian citizen at an official ceremony and receive a citizenship certificate. All forms and documents are filled out correctly and carefully. Your application could be rejected if incorrect or incomplete.
Benefits of Becoming a Canadian Citizen
Canadian citizens enjoy many benefits not available to permanent residents and non-residents. These include:
⦁ Full access to Canada’s social programs such as health care, employment insurance, old age security, and Canada pension plan
⦁ Vote in federal elections and run for federal office
⦁ The right to apply for a passport and travel outside Canada with fewer restrictions
⦁ Apply for protection (refugee status) under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms
⦁ The ability to have greater job protection under federal labour laws
⦁ Greater protection under Canadian law
⦁ The right to apply for family members to immigrate to Canada
⦁ Apply for government jobs, including jobs with the police force and government security agencies.
Start Your Journey to Canadian Citizenship Today
Immigration consultancy firms can help you navigate the process of becoming a Canadian citizen. They will guide you through all the steps needed to become a citizen, saving you valuable time and money. As they make your transition easier, you can focus on other priorities in life!